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IATSE and AMPTP Reach Agreement

Compromises from both IATSE and AMPTP help close the $400 million deficit in health care and pension plans

The International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees and the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers have reached a tentative three-year agreement, the organizations said Friday afternoon.

The two sides resumed negotiations on Thursday, after taking a couple weeks away from the bargaining table to review data.

IATSE International President Matthew D. Loeb assured members that the guild protected health and pension benefits by making some concessions in other areas.

Also read: IATSE, AMPTP Will Return to the Bargaining Table April 12

“Our goals going into these negotiations have been met,” Loeb said a letter addressed to brothers and sisters of the guild. "The health and pension benefits that we have worked so hard for over the years have been protected and will not be reduced.

The guild, comprised of roughly 100,000 workers including cinematographers, art directors, costume designers and other below-the-line workers, had a deficit north of $400 million to overcome.

"As you are aware, our benefit plans faced a staggering shortfall that threatened the stability of our pension and health plans,” Loeb said. “We have closed that shortfall with an impact on the participants that is as minimal as possible."

AMPTP acknowledged the importance of those benefits to workers on Friday.

"We understand how important health and pension benefits are to Hollywood crew members and their families and the risk posed by the projected shortfall in funding those benefits,” AMPTP said in a statement. “We worked diligently with IATSE to resolve the funding crisis and keep these plans financially sound and a vital resource for participants."

Under the new agreement, employees with one dependent or more will also have to pay premiums between $25 and $50 a month for healthcare coverage. The agreement also calls for a 2 percent wage increase for each year.

The agreement will be sent to IATSE members as soon as specific contract language has been drafted, Loeb said. The current contract expires July 31.